Jun 062010
 

Nothing says “relaxing resupply” more than an extended lounge in a city park, making grass mandalas on the belly of your companion, while some local teenage boys take turns tasering each other’s nipples less than 20 feet away. Such was the scene on that long blissful rest day in Flagstaff, Arizona. It was my second visit to this town. After my fabulous luck with the revisit to Superior, I got in the compulsive habit of being in each of the next 3 resupply towns twice, with at least a week in between visits. After Superior, I was supposed to resupply at Lake Roosevelt, but an immediate need to replace my boots demanded a premature visit to Payson. Next resupply 5 days later.. Payson. Hello again! No one recognized me. No legends had sprung up about me. But I did get to meet up with Brian and Tyler, 2 extremely entertaining hikers I kept running into who had arrived a day before me (and NOT because they walk so much faster  🙂 ) and had already gone to the movies, a civil war reenactment, Kentucky Fried Chicken like 4 times, and who knows where else .. They were comfortably stationed in MY Couchsurfing host’s house and had already claimed the room with the bigscreen. And they were pissed at me because there was no roller rink in Payson like I had SAID.. AND… I wasn’t going to let them stay with me at the Best Western the next night. Ahhh … the angst of the early twenty-somethings… Payson had it all as far as resupply was concerned and the first real gear shop since Tuscon… But most AZT hikers don’t stop here.. It’s more than 5 miles away from the trail and Pine comes up so quickly…

So when I got to Pine, there was no big celebratory hoo-ha.. I had only walked a day and a half since Payson… But being a shame to waste a chance for a decent salad, I had lunch there with the superhero Derek (beloved friend and housesitter) and camped at the trailhead …. I would return to Pine within a couple of weeks, not for resupply but for secret reasons….. and I can attest that it is a fine resupply town…

From here, I walked to Sedona where I had my most traumatic official resupply… Seeing home from the trail was pretty magical from a distance and I had rerouted the official Arizona Trail route to make it happen (adding 26  miles and a premature drop from the Mogollon Rim … another extra popsicle please)…. It was traumatic because my off -trail life wanted me back, all of my friends (all of them) were in crisis, my pets were demanding explanation, and I couldn’t handle the stimulation of it all.. I live like this? Normally? I couldn’t get back out there fast enough… to the less complex demands of  trail life… like body shredding and lack of  sleep…

Everything went snow silly at this point and I will have to dedicate a post to exactly how my line of travel evolved … But for now… Next resupply was in Flagstaff for the first time… alone … and not because I needed it… Hail and wind chased me off the trail into the hostel  where I read “The Short Wondrous  Life of Oscar Wao” in its entirety and first entertained the idea of “rerouting” to Northern California (remember that post?)… Here is where I went back to the Catalinas and  Superior… But I returned to Flagstaff .. and in that park… with the Scotsman.. We had just done 27 miles after 1pm… All inspired by a spontaneous conversation about our favorite foods and the exact way they should be prepared .. and the casual mention of the amount of breweries that existed in Flagstaff… I flattered myself that I was being auditioned for my true thru-hiker walking ability with the highly skilled and efficient Colin Ibbotson, but the truth was we were both consumed by thoughts of food and beer… simple truth…. And it made my legs work miraculously efficiently.. even in the elevating wind gusts and  loss of daylight…

Next resupply experience was in Grand Canyon Village and was quite a little party. I had the great fortune of being invited to stay at the home of Li, a fire management employee at the Grand Canyon who happens to also be quite a trail and map guru, having completed all major three long-distance trails in the United States as well as the Arizona Trail when it was even LESS finished than it was this year, AND, who makes a mean chile verde.. Me, Colin, Christine (the German tourist hiker who’s accomplishments were as incredible), and Li had a wonderful time together and the three of us minus Li set off the next morning to do the finishing run of the trip…

Total resting/resupply days: a snow-induced embarrassingly high number

MY ARIZONA TRAIL PICTURES:  click here

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  4 Responses to “~The Arizona Trail~ Resupply In Paradise (Part 2)”

  1. Another important resupply note: there is unfortunately no pizza and beer (or anything else) in Sunflower, so don’t get your hopes up…

  2. You’re absolutely right Sirena and thanks for pointing that out! I lost the trust of a couple of people over that one!

  3. …dreaming Flag!

  4. Very little at Roosevelt either. Hitchhiking isn’t what it used to be so pretty chancy getting to any commercial establishments from there. Hopefully Butcherhook or Spring Creek Inn will get the message and become “AZT-friendly.”

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